New Zealand reopens Taratahi Agriculture Centre, injects $1.2 million to train 1,000 people

by MCR Correspondent

The government of New Zealand has reopened the Taratahi Agriculture Centre to boost jobs and opportunities.

While disclosing this on on Thursday July 30, 2020, the Agriculture Minister, Damien O’Connor, stated that the Wairarapa-based training center is reopening its doors after two years to deliver industry taster and familiarisation courses.

He said the reopening of the center will help workers displaced from other sectors into primary sector roles and lives.

According to the Minister, the government is injecting $1.2 million into the program to train 1,000 people, including providing wrap around job placement support.

O’Connor noted that Taratahi’s liquidation had left a large gap in agricultural education in the country.

He stressed that a lot of hours had been put in by several people to get the country to where it is today.

“There are significant employment opportunities in our primary industries and we are committed to helping to train people to have the skills they need for the opportunities in front of us.

“Our agricultural training institutions have never had a more important role to play.

“Some sectors have been heavily affected by the closure of our borders, and because of this, we’re working to transition Kiwis without work into primary sector jobs,” lO’Connor said.

“This also helps farmers and growers cope with the reduction in migrant workers and helps ensure the sector continues to play a vital role in rebuilding our economy,” he added.

These training opportunities are part of the Government’s work to place 10,000 New Zealanders in primary sector jobs by rapidly retraining and absorbing displaced workers in sectors impacted by Covid.

Another aspect is the website and marketing campaign – Opportunity Grows Here – that was launched this week to raise awareness of the career opportunities available in the food and fibre sector.

Damien O’Connor said Telford Farm in Balclutha had shown the way, co-designing courses with industry that got a big uptake.

“The courses at Taratahi are modelled on those already being successfully delivered at Telford, which has received nearly $950,000 to fund 620 training spots.

“Their rural contractors’ course is almost completely full through to the end of the year and their taster courses have seen similar levels of interest,” he said.

Taratahi Agricultural Training Centre is a tertiary provider offering full and part-time agriculture training courses. Established in 1919 as a training farm in central Wairarapa for men returning from World War I.

It was known as the Wairarapa Cadet Training Farm.

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